This soup sits at that happy intersection where health, thrift and tastiness collide.
2 red onions (one for the soup, one for the frazzling)
3 sticks celery
3 sweet potatoes
1″ peeled, grated ginger
1 clove garlic
1 chopped green chilli
Half of a half-pint glass red lentils
A tiny pinch of cloves (not even a quarter of a teaspoon, or you’ll be sorry!)
Half a teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon paprika
2.5 pints boiling water
4 heaped teaspoons Marigold stock powder
Salt, pepper, sugar and olive oil
Prepare all of your vegetables in the usual way, but put one of your onions to one side, untouched till later.
Sweat the vegetables gently in olive oil for about 10 minutes, then add the lentils and the spices, before pouring in the boiling water. Put a lid on, bring to the boil, and allow to boil vigorously for 10 minutes before turning it down to a simmer for the remaining 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice the other red onion very finely and fry gently in a little olive oil until soft. Now add a teaspoonful of sugar and a little salt and turn the heat up to maximum. Let the onions stick and frazzle a little.
When the lentils are tender, whoosh up your soup with a hand blender, taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Scatter the fried onions over the top.